Legislation allows schools to charge for certain activities which take place both inside and outside school hours. Norfolk County Council has adopted a policy, which it recommends to governors, but it is for governors of schools to decide whether or not to follow the policy. The School’s charging policy must be described in its brochure, which can be obtained from the school.
If your son’s or daughter’s school governors follow the County Council’s charging policy, these are the activities and materials for which you will be charged:
Activities outside school hours
A charge will be made for all non-residential activities which take place wholly or more than 50% outside school hours, where the child’s participation has been agreed in advance by the parents. The charge will include the cost of travel, entrance fees, insurance, books, equipment and any staff (teaching or non-teaching) engaged specifically for the activity.
Residential trips outside school hours – a residential trip is deemed to take place outside school hours if the number of “missed” school sessions is less than half of the number of half days taken up by the trip. Charges will be made as described above.
Public Examinations – charges are made for the entry of a pupil for a prescribed examination for which he/she has not been prepared by the school, or where the pupil entered for examinations in the same subject with two examination boards.
Remission of charges – only parents who are in receipt of Income Support, Income Based Job Seeker’s Allowance, an income-related employment and support allowance (this benefit was introduced on 27 October 2008); Support under Part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999 and Child Tax Credit, where the parent is not entitled to Working Tax Credit and whose annual income (as assessed by the Inland Revenue) does not exceed £16,190 or the Guarantee Element of the State Pension Credit are eligible for remission of charges. Remission of charges only applies to board and lodgings charges which are levied directly by the LEA or the school and where they relate to activities deemed to take place wholly or partly in school hours.
Remission will not apply to such charges when they relate to activities wholly outside school hours, except if the activity is prescribed in a syllabus for a public examination, if it is prescribed by the National Curriculum or fulfils duties relating to Religious Education.
Parents who have difficulty meeting any charges should discuss the matter in confidence with the headteacher.